Being Lost… (without Them)
The last 7 days were one of the hardest times Kaye and I have endured as a family. However, it was also during those 7 days that our faith and hope are in their strongest degree, especially in the kind of ordeal we experienced, that is finally coming to an end (Praise God!).
Recalling back, it was Thursday (November 26) of last week since my mag-ina, Kaye and Kara, left my parents-in-law home for Asian Hospital. Kara was already experiencing a 40-something fever at that time, and we still don’t know what triggered such onset. It was very hard to see Kara being bothered with her condition, which made it more difficult for her to sleep. Though when I got home, I reassured Kara that her fever will pass. But after preparing Kaye’s clothes at the apartment and went back to the other house, they decided to bring Kara to Asian, just to be sure our baby girl will be properly taken cared of.
As Kaye recounts, the attending ER physician (who she saw as pogi daw! hehehe!) initially wouldn’t want to admit them since it was just the first day of fever. Diagnoses were made on Kara afterward. But Kaye doesn’t want to take chances so she insisted that they be admitted so Kara is a lot safer since she’ll be checked round the clock, by the nurses and docs on duty.
As Kaye tends to Kara, I was left home to stay with the two kulets, Jemy and Cassie. Good thing, their attention is not much yet on what’s going around them. I then realized that it was the first time their Mama was not around. I just thought, maybe it’s just ok because I know I’m there with them.
The following day was the day of unexpected answers to Kara’s condition. And behold, the pedia doctor assigned to her suspected already that it might be a case of dengue. Still farfetched with the idea since Kara’s platelets were high, they will still have to work up Kara’s blood parameters from time to time. But come Sunday, the thing we feared came. Kara’s platelets went down tremendously breaking the 100 limit. It was then that we really have to be ready for anything. So the whole day, we search for possible donors (type O+) and even went to various blood banks like Red Cross in Manila for additional platelets for possible transfusion. Luckily, a lot did respond to our distress. But in the end, I was the only one who passed for the donation since around 5 of the other donors were denied due to some screening reasons. (My cousin, though he passed, can’t donate that day because he had alcohol the previous night. He donated Monday PM) At the end of the day, there were 4 bags of ready platelets, 2 yet to be screened, and 2 more to be processed (one is my blood).
In the first few days of the ordeal, Kaye and I couldn’t do anything. According to the pedia, we should let the condition (dengue) take its course. It’s the only way that we can determine that Kara will eventually become okay. But for us, especially for Kaye, that was really hard to fathom at that point. She needed to stay strong for Kara, assuring her that the things everyone is doing will lead to her faster recovery. I couldn’t help but notice that, though she doesn’t say anything or confer to me much, hirap na s’ya to bear the idea. The anguish, the fear of what might happen… all those sum up her silence. Ako nga, I feel guilty pa of not being their with her sa hospital because I need to stay with the kids at home. And it was really hard that Kaye and Kara weren’t at home. JUst thinking of them battling an illness by themselves, while me watching over the kids at home and not being there… it’s like the family was miles apart from each other. But that’s just it. Kailangan lang. Sometimes the strength one needs will just have to come from the thought that me and kids are there with them or Kara and Kaye are there with us back home.
Eventually, when I got to stay at the hospital that Sunday, it was again the only time that Kaye felt I was there with her. When she came out of the room, I was sitted outside on a vacant movable bed. She went to me, embraced me and started to pour her feelings about the experience. I hugged her so tight that I too felt her fear and concern to the whole thing. She needed my strength the most and I’m glad I was there for her and give her that push when on her own, the dengue concept was too much for her to battle by mind alone. I even decided to stay that night just to make her renew herself with much rest so she has regained strength to face yet another tough day with Kara’s dengue.
Monday arrived. I was still groggy for lack of sleep because I watched Kara most of the time. Then, the pedia hematologist came to the room early and told us about the possibility of Kara’s platelets still declining. What scared us more is that it will eventually reach 20 or close to it. Though they say most dengue cases reach that point, we weren’t ready for such count especially because it’s our Kara who’s on the line. Katakot isipin! But despite that possibility, Kara still remained bubbly and talkative as ever. Nanlalait pa nga at times, which we see as a good sign. Staying positive is the only thing that’s left for us to do. I went home by lunch time and felt uneasy leaving them behind. But Kaye insisted for me to do so since I’ll be going to work the next day, and Jemy and Cassie needed a parent to be with them. So when I got to the apartment, I played with the kids a bit, worked on my rakets a bit. But I really felt lost, siguro because I was aware Kaye and Kara are not around. And moreso, Kara is still fighting her illness. I thought sana ako na lang para siguro tapos na lang, tutal I’m a lot stronger (I think) and kakayanin ko yung sakit, much more yung pagextract lagi nung dugo from her arm. Ang sakit kaya nun everytime!
Tuesday. I thought of passing by the hospital before going to work. Then the worst news… the pedia hematologist found that the latest count places Kara’s platelets down to 23. So she was already to be transfused with fresh platelets later that day. Learning that, I decided not to go to office. I wanted to stay with Kara and with Kaye through the ending stages of dengue, to support them morally and spiritually. At around past 1030am, transfusion was already underway. Her vein was fast gulping down thru IV the platelets that can replenish those that where damaged. After an hour and a half, we waited for another 6 hours before Kara is extracted again of blood for another round of testing. Then we wait again. All throughout the day, I prayed harder, every hour until such time arrived when the results came in.
It was around past 7 or 8pm when the results came back. And it was worth the wait! Kara’s platelets went up by 13, from 23 to 36. Wow! Really a good sign! Apart from that, rashes became more obvious on her legs, and arms. The prayers really paid off! Kara, finally, is on her road to recovery already! However, another test will be done by 6am next day so as to see if indeed the platelets jive well with hers. Kaye and I were so glad of this turnaround. And hopefully, Kara will be back in shape in no time.
Tuesday… the make or break day. I prepared early so I could pass by Asian asap and stay longer. However, it was quite hard to leave that morning since Jemy was having asthma episodes again and Cassie had slight fever. Wawa naman precious babies ko. Good thing our meds at home are complete so treatment was ready para maagapan. Also the yayas are quite aware of what to do already that’s why, though I would still want to stay with them, I left for Asian. Bad trip though, my jeep service was slow so wala rin nangyari sa kakamadali ko. But actually, I was just in time. A few minutes after I arrived sa room, the pedia hematologist came. And she told us the nicest sound to our ears: Kara’s platelets again went up to 44. Indeed, it was great wake-up call, hearing that Kara will soon be out of the woods.
In all these days, Kaye and I battled fear, anguish, longing and even distance. Though most of the time we were apart, we made it through everything together in spirit, and in prayer. But in most parts, I’m happy that Kaye remained steadfast especially for Kara’s sake. And I’m proud of her, as a mother who stayed with our baby girl, a companion who assured that things will still be okay, and a partner who kept the family strong despite the difficulties the illness of dengue has brought.
I know the fight is far from over, but in time, Kara’s health will be back to normal. So what’s next after this? Well… the anticipation of coming home, where Jemy, Cassie and I are just waiting for Mama and Ate to arrive so they could get all the hugs and kisses they finally deserve after being away for a short while.
See at home soon okay? We LOVE you!!!